POSCO Energy has entered a legal battle with FuelCell Energy (FCE), the Herald Business reported on Jan. 22.
With the conflict between the two companies heading toward collapse, the possibility of POSCO Energy's withdrawal from its fuel cell business following the liquidation of its business partner in the worst-case scenario cannot be ruled out, the media reported.
Earlier this month, POSCO Energy applied the provisional seizure for receivables to the court for damages caused by the failure of the FCE fuel cell manufacturing facility, which was completed in 2016.
The facility, which provided the cause of the provisional seizure, is a device that stabilizes the stack of 300 kilowatt fuel cells in the production facility built in Pohang. The power generation efficiency could be raised when a device to stabilize stack works smoothly.
However, the device failed to operate at all due to a number of problems with the stabilization system and parts designed and provided by FCE.
POSCO Energy set up a joint investigation team with FCE to find about 97 problems and continuously ask for a resolution, but it ended up, bringing up the legal litigation card after the FCE's uncooperative attitude failed to resolve them.
"POSCO Energy, which has the source technology for MCFC-style fuel cells, shares the situation of the fuel cell business in Korea, presents specific conditions such as the establishment of JV (Joint Venture) to solve the problem, and has continuously attempted to consult with FCE," an official of the energy industry said. "However, it is likely that there will be a legal dispute as FCE ignored the existing partnership agreement."
"It is true that we applied to the court to make up for losses," a POSCO Energy official said. "We are looking for solutions in various ways, putting the promotion of the establishment of a joint venture with FCE at the top of our agenda."